Construction Today - September/October 2017 - 109
including healthcare in the San Francisco Bay Area. In recent years,
the company did $20 million worth of site work on an eight-year
project for the John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek. It
involved excavation and high-end architectural, concrete and landscape work for new buildings, parking structures and parking lots.
"There's been a big push in the past 15 years to either upgrade or
rebuild existing hospitals in the [San Francisco] Bay Area," Hester
says. One such project is the Highland Hospital Acute Care Tower
in Oakland. The project calls for rebuilding the hospital's acute care
tower, which will be operated by Alameda Health System and provide healthcare services to the people of Alameda County.
Working jointly with Bethesda, Md.-based Clark Construction, McGuire & Hester's $10 million portion of the work includes excavation,
grading, utilities, structural and architectural concrete. The project,
which has been ongoing for about 7 years, is targeted for completion
next year. "It's a very complicated multiple-phase project," Hester
says. "It's difficult because the hospital stays operational while we
work, but our crews handle the challenge well. It's really nice when
I receive compliments about how considerate our employees are
when they interact with the hospital staff, patients and visitors."
McGuire and Hester is 100 percent employee-owned and has offices
throughout California including in Alameda, Oakland and Sacramento. In 2017, the company opened its new 22,000-square foot
corporate headquarters in Alameda.
The new building has a variety of amenities that include a large
break room with bay doors that open up to a deck equipped with
a barbecue area, fire pit and bocce ball court. In August, McGuire
and Hester hosted an open house to thank its business partners and
clients for helping to make its new headquarters possible. "The great
relationships we have built in this industry have led to the success
our company enjoys today," Hester says.
For the past six consecutive years, McGuire and Hester was named
Top Workplace in the Bay area by the Bay Area News Group.
The 12th Street project was part of Measure DD - the Oakland
Trust for Clean Water and Safe Parks. The measure designed $198
million to fund a variety of projects related to clean water and parks.
The 12th Street project accounted for $32 million.
McGuire and Hester reconfigured the existing 12-lane expressway
into a six-lane, tree-lined boulevard with signalized intersections
and crosswalks as well as a landscaped median. The new roadway
was constructed further away from the shoreline to allow for the
creation of a new four-acre park with a waterfront at the south end
of Lake Merritt. In addition, new pedestrian and bike paths were
built and open water bridges were constructed. Unsafe and unsightly pedestrian tunnels were removed. The project also included
re-establishing a section of open channel and removing a buried
culvert at the interface with the lake.
This open canal is the first phase of what will eventually allow
travel by kayak from the lake to the Oakland Estuary. The open
channel will also increase tidal flushing of the lake. Tidal flushing
renews the salinity and nutrients of the estuary. This means a
cleaner water quality in Lake Merritt and improved habitat for fish
"Overall the 12th Street Reconstruction Project is a significant improvement for the environment as well as for the City of Oakland,"
Hester says. "It was very difficult project, but we have a great team.
It highlighted all of our trade capabilities such as grading, paving,
major structural concrete, landscape and architectural concrete."
Although the company moved its headquarters, it has kept its Oakland location as the operational base for the Bay area. "We've done
some pretty significant projects for the City of Oakland," Hester says.
"It's been a good relationship."
McGuire and Hester's history with the City of Oakland dates
back to World War II when it installed underground utilities for its
Oakland Army Base. More recently, the company worked on a major
revitalization along the shoreline of Lake Merritt, called the 12th
Street Reconstruction project.
Over a life span of 150 years, Lake Merritt moved further away
from its natural habitat. The lake is a natural tidal slough connected
to the bay by a channel. Over time, it has been filled in as new roadways and interstates were being built. In some sections, the channel
was flooded with water passing between the lake and estuary
through an underground box culvert - and it has remained that way
for the past 100 years.
SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2017 CONSTRUCTION-TODAY.COM